#1
Hello all

For a long time, I thought that all guitars were handmade to some extent. Then I found out that some are more handmade than others. Aparently, Gibson are handmade.

Does it make such a big difference? I mean, sure there's the "made with love" factor, but you still use machines to build it.

Like, if you're routing pickup cavities, does it matter that much if it's done by a handheld router and template, or by a CNC router?

And no-one, like, cuts the body out by hand with a knife or a saw. Everyone uses bandsaws or the previously mentioned CNC routers

The general assembly (bolting on necks, putting in pickups, hardware, stringing...) is always done by hand.

Is there really that big a difference? Is it worth the extra cash?
#2
Handmade probably has a better cut of the wood and is probably higher quality.



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#3
Quote by p.stick
Handmade probably has a better cut of the wood and is probably higher quality.

Ok. But that's got nothing to do with the contruction. Why can't people get some good wood and machine-make a good guitar? Less effort, lower cost, satisfied customer.
#4
Quote by sashki
Ok. But that's got nothing to do with the contruction. Why can't people get some good wood and machine-make a good guitar? Less effort, lower cost, satisfied customer.


Because machine just takes in wood and cut it. If it is handmade, the person will always look for some faults and avoid them.



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#5
That was the idea by Fender. Take their factories to Indonesia/Taiwan and spew out rubbish toys, not instruments. A well built guitar will sound good, the Japanese and American factories are good.

Thats why a good instrument will generally cost more :-)
#6
Most of the times when it says handmade all it is is one guy putting a screw in somewhere, and the rest done by machine. "Handmade" just sounds better.

Of course, in general, "handmade" just means better quality wood, construction, tighter quality control and way more attention to detail.
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#7
Gibson just seems so overpriced. I'm not at all denying that it's good (cos they're great) but you can get equal, even better, for less. I was wonder what makes them so special, besides collector's value.

Then again, Fender has collectors value, and costs half as much.
#8
Most people dont want to pay for a true handmade instrument. Think of the hours that are needed to craft a guitar body and the problems when you make a mistake. A CNC machine used to make most guitar parts are very accurate. I doubt even gibson has a guy with a wood plane making guitar bodies from scratch. And yes machines will lower the cost of a guitar. Its all in the quality of the machine and the experience of the operator. There is still a person who will take the parts and assemble them. Just the effort that put into it is much different on a gibson than a 100 dollar guitar. And that effort costs money. We all see the posts of people trying to get really cheap guitars from overseas. Pay cheap get cheap.
#9
Why do you think that the guitars that people are building and posting here on UG look so GODDAMN SECKSY
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#10
Quote by Tackleberry
Pay cheap get cheap.

Not necessarily true. Price doesn't always equal quality. I'll tell you, my 230 euro Ibanez turned out to be more versatile, comfortable and better sounding than a lot of expensive (1000 euros or more) guitars taht I've played. A gibson SG was one of them.

Sure, my guitar isn't the best in the world, but it's amazing for its price. And it's machine made. Out of AGATHIS.

IN INDONESIA, GODDAMMIT! And it still manages to be good.
#11
Quote by madmk
That was the idea by Fender. Take their factories to Indonesia/Taiwan and spew out rubbish toys, not instruments. A well built guitar will sound good, the Japanese and American factories are good.

Thats why a good instrument will generally cost more :-)

the mim instruments are brilliant values for the money, so long as you find a good one (not that hard)... if i may quote another member of this forum "mim fenders are made by mexicans in mexico, mia fenders are made by mexicans in california"... i mean there is better hard ware, and wood choice but thats about it
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#12
Instruments have to be handmade to a degree. It's arguable, though, that a production line necks cut by a precision machine will be more consistent than a neck hand-cut.
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#13
Quote by MrCarrot
Instruments have to be handmade to a degree. It's arguable, though, that a production line necks cut by a precision machine will be more consistent than a neck hand-cut.

I see no difference. Apart from that the production line necks will all be exactly the same. I'm sure if you make two identically shaped necks, one by hand, one by machine, you won't feel a difference.
#14
another reason why handmade can be better is due to scale... if a company is machine-making guitars, odds are they're churning out as many as possible. there won't be the same attention to detail, and they won't be able to select the wood etc. as well because they're making so many. if they need 5000 bits of wood per week, they obviously can't exercise the same QC as someone who needs 5...

whereas if you go to a guy who makes one or two a week, they're going to search for the best wood they can find...

(resi pretty much already made this point, i just wanted to expand upon it)
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#15
Any instrument that can be assembled by a machine should and will be assembled by a machine. It's just more cost-efficient with no real drawbacks. The guitar is still designed by humans, and it still has to pass quality control, which is administered by humans. All my guitars are machine assembled, and I have no problems with them.
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#16
another thing is that if it's entirely or mostly hand made then it's some luthier sitting there working his/her ass off, he's going to want to be proud of what he/she has made, therefore you are likely to get a guitar made to perfection. then of course i'm sure you get the odd depressed guy who does a sloppy job and couldn't care less because his wife just filed for a divorce
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#17


yeah, i mean when it's one guy, it's his name on the line. whereas someone working for a big company is pretty anonymous.
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I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

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Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

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Et tu, br00tz?